Update: The Predators received a similar chance in the second period, getting a 5-on-3 for a full two minutes. James Neal succeeded where the Blues failed, scoring on the power play to tie Game 5 1-1. We’ll see if that factors into who ultimately wins the contest.
A lot can change over the next two periods (or more if there’s overtime), but St. Louis Blues fans have less to gripe about in Game 5 than they did in Game 4. At least when it comes to officiating.
After being “doomed” by the extra penalty in losing to the Nashville Predators last time around, the Blues enjoyed some nice opportunities early on Friday.
Now, that’s not to say that anything fishy was afoot. The four-minute high-sticking penalty Mattias Ekholm received, which put the Predators in a 5-on-3 penalty kill situation for almost two minutes, seemed like the right call.
Here’s video of the call:
The Predators killed the first portion of the Blues’ power-play opportunities during a frantic end to the opening frame.
St. Louis will still have plenty of power play time to begin the second. If they can’t score, it could be one of those moments that the Blues end up regretting. (The Blues didn’t score on their power play and Nashville failed on an abbreviated one of their own.)
But, again, there could be plenty of plot twists as the game goes along – whether the refs are involved or not.